The one building is taller, lit by floodlights, signed with massive gaudy multicolored flashing moving lights that glow to the horizon. It cost tens of millions of dollars to build and equip and it is staffed with a large number of cleaning and maintenance workers, many more others whose duty is to ensure the comfort of the people who arrive seeking to win, and a core of well-trained experts who determine in large degree whether these people win, or lose. The building was built with one goal in mind. And it generally succeeds in satisfying this goal.
The second building is not as tall and lacks the floodlights. It is signed with modest informational lighted and arrowed directions that facilitate finding the right doors in the dark. It does not light up the sky. It too cost tens of millions of dollars to build and equip and it is staffed with a large number of cleaning and maintenance workers, many more others whose duty is to ensure the comfort of the people who arrive seeking to win, and a well-trained core of experts who determine in large degree whether these people win, or lose. The building was built with one goal in mind. And it generally succeeds in satisfying this goal.
Many people seek out these two buildings, all with the goal of winning, and the risk of losing, occupying their minds. Each of these people knows there is a degree of chance, a degree of randomness but also some predictability, to whether they will win or lose inside each building. Many hope for luck as they arrive. Others pray for divine intervention. Some think they are preordained to win. Others sense they might lose, but they try not to dwell upon this. But they show in great numbers, because the chance to win, however nearly certain or only a prayer, is a powerful drive.
From these brief descriptions you might conclude that there is considerable similarity between these two buildings, and perhaps even more similarity between the people who built them and manage them. Surely these folks have the same goals if the buildings seem so much the same. Obviously, someone spent the money to build, equip and staff these two buildings. They presumably expect some reward for doing this. I think we can conclude that these would not be reasonable investments if some profit did not flow from the people visiting the two buildings into the hands of the people who work in those two buildings and also into the hands of those who paid to build, equip and staff them.
There is one significant difference between the people who built and manage these two buildings. The first of these groups of people is admired and even celebrated and the people flock to their building wearing smiles, and they mostly leave the building at the end of their stay with a similar smile. They spent some considerable amount of money in that building and thus the building served its purpose for the people who built and manage it. Some leave having won, and most do not. Most lose.
The second group of people is sometimes admired and even celebrated, but is often not. This second group is instead very often a subject of distrust and even scorn. The people who visit the building don't generally arrive wearing smiles, and only some leave with one. The people who visited spent some considerable money in that building, and thus this building also served its purpose to those who invested to build and staff it. Some visiting people leave the building having won, and others have lost.
So again it might seem that these are two nearly identical situations. And to many it might seem that this is so. But one very significant difference does exist. For you see, the first group of people who built and staffed their building fervently hope that the people who visit their building will lose. They structure every single aspect of that building to encourage people to lose as much and as often as possible. This first group of people cares nothing more than for how they can create an environment in which people will lose. And they lie, cheat, and steal to insure that this happens.
The second group of people is subtly different, for they instead do everything in their power to see that the people who visit will win. And they spend very little time plotting how to scam more money from their visitors.
So why does the public in general generally like the first group of people more than the second, and they instead often accuse the second group of the nefarious behaviors?
Well.....in case you haven't guessed, the first group of people built and manage a casino, and the second group of people built and manage a hospital. And the people who like a casino and accuse a hospital of lying, cheating, and stealing.....well, they are a bit unclear on the concept.
I'm going to make a leap of faith here and assume that at least some of you reading this see the truth. And then I'm going to ask you to extend some understanding toward your local veterinary hospital. And when I suggest that I want you to consider the recent 20/20 program in which a known self-serving quack spent considerable effort to discredit the people who built and staff veterinary hospitals, I hope you will realize that we manage them the way we do because we fervently hope that the people who arrive with misgivings will leave after having a win. The ravings of a quack notwithstanding, that is what generally happens in a veterinary hospital.